Christopher Poole

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Christopher Poole
Christopher Poole at XOXO Festival September 2012.jpg
Poole in 2012
Bornc. 1988 (age 33–34)
Other namesmoot
OccupationEntrepreneur, Google employee
Known forFounder and former administrator of 4chan

Christopher Poole (born c. 1988), known online as moot, is an American Internet entrepreneur. He was born in New York City. He is best known for founding the anonymous English-language imageboard 4chan in October 2003. He served as the site's head administrator for more than 11 years before stepping down in January 2015. In 2016, he began working for Google.[1] As of 2018, he works in the company's Google Maps division, based in Tokyo.

Career[change | change source]

4chan[change | change source]

In April 2009, Poole was voted the world's most influential person of 2008 by an open Internet poll conducted by Time.[2]

On September 12, 2009, Poole gave a talk on why 4chan has a reputation as a "Meme Factory" at the Paraflows Symposium in Vienna, Austria, which was part of the Paraflows 09 festival, themed Urban Hacking. In this talk, Poole mainly attributed this to the anonymous system, and to the lack of data retention on the site ("The site has no memory").[3][4] His talk was published in the academic reader Mind and Matter: Comparative Approaches towards Complexity (edited by Günther Friesinger, Johannes Grenzfurthner, Thomas Ballhausen).[5]

On February 10, 2010, Poole spoke at the TED2010 conference in Long Beach, California.[6][7] He spoke about the increasing prevalence of persistent user identities and the sharing of personal information on sites such as Facebook and Twitter, and he also spoke about the value of anonymous posting on sites such as 4chan.[8] Fred Leal of the Brazilian newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo said his inclusion in the conference "indicates that something extraordinary is happening... [4chan] challenges every Internet convention: it is, alone, the antithesis of Google, social networking sites, and blogs."[9]

Canvas[change | change source]

In 2010, Poole was reported to have raised $625,000 to create a new online enterprise, Canvas.[10][11] The website opened on January 31, 2011, and featured digitally modified images uploaded by users who are required to self-identify using Facebook Connect.[12] The enterprise ran until January 2014 when Poole announced that Canvas, and its DrawQuest feature, would be going out of business.[13][14][15]

Post-4chan[change | change source]

In January 2015, Poole announced that he would be stepping down as the 4chan administrator.[16] On January 23, he hosted a final Q&A with site users using the /qa/ board and YouTube to livestream. This marked the beginning of his "retirement" from being an administrator and owner of the website after eleven and a half years.[17] He began a process of turning control of the site over to three anonymous 4chan moderators while searching for a buyer for the website.[18] On September 21, 2015, it was announced that Hiroyuki Nishimura, founder of the Japanese BBS 2channel, would take over as the site's owner.[19][20]

References[change | change source]

  1. "4chan founder 'moot' joins Google. But why?". BBC. March 9, 2020. Retrieved October 10, 2020.
  2. "The World's Most Influential Person Is..." Time. 2009-04-27. Archived from the original on 2013-08-26. Retrieved 2009-09-02.
  3. "Paraflows 09". September 12, 2009. Archived from the original on May 11, 2011. Retrieved 2010-05-18.
  4. Herwig, Jana. Partial transcript: Moot on 4chan and why it works as a meme factory, Digiom blog, April 6, 2010. accessed 2010-04-07
  5. "Mind and Matter: Comparative Approaches towards Complexity". Transcript. Retrieved 15 May 2018.
  6. "TED2010 program of speakers". Archived from the original on July 13, 2011. Retrieved 2010-05-18.
  7. Fisher, Ken. 4chan's moot takes pro-anonymity to TED 2010, Ars Technica, February 11, 2010. accessed 2010-02-12
  8. "4chan founder: Anonymous speech is 'endangered'". SciTechBlog. Blogs. February 12, 2010. Retrieved 2010-02-12.
  9. Leal, Fred (April 19, 2010). "Feio, sujo e surreal". O Estado de S. Paulo (in Portuguese). p. L1. Archived from the original on September 9, 2010. Retrieved April 25, 2010.
  10. Cha, Ariana Eunjung (August 10, 2010). "4chan users seize Internet's power for mass disruptions". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 10, 2010.
  11. Dibbell, Julian (2010-09-10). "Radical Opacity". Technology Review. Archived from the original on 2012-04-30. Retrieved 2021-11-22.
  12. Jeffries, Adrianne (January 31, 2011). "From the Creator of 4chan Comes the More Mature Canvas". The New York Observer. Archived from the original on February 4, 2011. Retrieved February 7, 2011.
  13. "A very important note from Team Canvas". Canvas Blog. Archived from the original on January 28, 2014. Retrieved January 28, 2014.
  14. D'Onfro, Jillian (January 21, 2014). "A Classy Way to Admit Your Startup is Dead". Business Insider. Retrieved January 28, 2014.
  15. Welch, Chris (January 21, 2014). "4chan founder Chris Poole is shutting down Canvas and DrawQuest for iOS". The Verge. Retrieved January 28, 2014.
  16. "THE NEXT CHAPTER by moot – 1/21/15 @ 11:00AM EST". 4chan Blog. Retrieved January 21, 2015.
  17. "moot's final 4chan Q&A by 4chan – 1/23/15 @ 2:00PM EST". 4chan. Retrieved January 25, 2015.
  18. Kushner, David (March 13, 2015). "4chan's Overlord Christopher Poole Reveals Why He Walked Away". Rolling Stone. Retrieved June 20, 2015.
  19. moot. "Full Circle". 4chan. Retrieved 21 September 2015.
  20. Issac, Mike (September 21, 2015). "4chan Message Board Sold to Founder of 2Channel, a Japanese Web Culture Pioneer". The New York Times. Retrieved September 21, 2015.

Other websites[change | change source]